Explore the stunning gardens that surround the castle
Hillsborough Castle's glorious gardens are bursting with colour and are a joy to explore. Discover ornamental grounds, peaceful woodland, meandering waterways and picturesque glens at Northern Ireland's royal residence.
The historic gardens, which were developed from the 1760s onwards, offer intriguing contrasts between ornate formal gardens, woodland and meadows. Keep an eye out for specimen trees and rare plants as you explore the grounds.
On arrival, don't forget to pick up your copy of our garden explorer map which reveals more of the garden's unique features, including the Yew Tree Walk, Moss Walk, Ice House, Pinetum and the Quaker Burial Ground.
These special gardens are a delight to the senses throughout the seasons and offer countless places to unwind, contemplate, socialise and seek inspiration.
April 2019 will see the opening of our four-acre 18th-century Walled Garden. Visit our Hillsborough Castle Project page for more information.Hillsborough Castle Project
Don't miss the tranquil Lady Alice’s Temple, where former resident Secretary of State Mo Mowlem once found welcome respite from the pressures of politics. Historically, the temple was given as a wedding gift to Lady Alice Hill by her brother, the 5th Marquess of Downshire in 1867. Take a seat and relish the tranquility as you enjoy stunning views of the surrounding gardens.
The beautiful Granville Garden was created in the 1940s and 1950s by HM the Queen's aunt; Lady Rose Bowes-Lyon. Lady Rose was the wife of the Earl of Granville, the second Governor of Northern Ireland. As young princesses, HM the Queen and HRH Princess Margaret would visit their aunt and uncle here at Hillsborough Castle.
This picturesque path is the route of the original road to Moira which passed in front of the house and into The Square. It was enclosed during the mid 1800s and is now named after the paired Irish Yew trees that line the path. It offers outstanding views of the nearby Lady Alice's Temple.
Take a wander alongside the beautiful Moss Walk, framed under a canopy of lime trees. This stunning area of the gardens has recently had new paths incorporated to follow the original historic layout from the 1770s and is a beautiful photo spot throughout the seasons.
Hillsborough Castle's gardens are a treat that always reward; look out for the statue of Ossian, the Quaker Burial Ground, Ice House and Pinetum.
Due to the nature of the on-going Hillsborough Castle Project, it is possible there may be closures or restricted access to the gardens during your visit.
We endeavour to keep disruption to a minimum during this time, and thank you for your understanding.
The sitting rabbit doorstop is a handsome fellow made out of luxurious beige fabric with silk trim - he is definitely more than a doorstop as his appealing looks are sure to guarantee him the best room in the house!
This inquisitive little hare will add character to your home and garden. With a traditional bronze effect finish, and inspired by classical bronze sculptures, this miniature hare will add narrative to your garden.